“Our Town. Our Health. Our Future” is the theme for April’s Underage Drinking Prevention Month programs. We participate in this national effort at our Teen Trials & Tribulations, a series of four talks that takes place tonight Thursday, April 10 from 7 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. in the CV High School library, 2900 Community Ave. It is free and open to the public.
To further promote prevention, CV Alliance, CV Town Council, and the La Cañada City Council hung warning signs in local liquor stores to remind adults it’s illegal to put liquor in the hands of minors. Merchants have embraced this program!
It looks like they need one in Florida.
A 17-year-old Pensacola boy was arrested on charges of sexual assault of a juvenile, a crime he allegedly committed at a house party for which his mother bought rum, whiskey and schnapps. Surveillance footage from the liquor store where the mom allegedly bought the alcohol corroborated the victim’s story. Chrisheyl Bryant Watson was arrested for two counts of contributing to the delinquency of a minor and one count of child neglect, and was released on $9,500 bond. Her son is locked up in a juvenile detention center.
Ann Ortega, program coordinator, Didi Hirsch’s Alcohol and Other Drugs Prevention Services, tells us alcohol is the most widely used drug by 12 to 17 year olds. Access is easy; they get it at home, from their friend’s home, or from adults who buy it for them. Since children learn attitudes from parents and adults, adults need to model responsible behavior. Parents may believe that allowing their children to drink in their home, and under their supervision, will help them develop an appropriate relationship with alcohol. However, studies indicate that minors allowed to drink at home have the steepest escalation in drinking behavior and drink more heavily outside of their home.
Suzy Jacobs is the executive director of CV Alliance. You can reach her at firstname.lastname@example.org.